When God's commandment Joseph knew aright
That with Zuleikha he should now unite,
Foundation for a royal feast he laid,
And for the banquet preparation made.
The king of Egypt with his nobles all,
Seated on honour's seat, came at his call.
By Abram's law and faith that Jacob knew,
In perfect manner and mode fair to view,*
He bound Zuleikha with his marriage knot,
That precious jewel into union brought.
From crescent to full moon were offerings laid,
Congratulations king and army made.
Short-comings to excuse did Joseph rise,
And to those present made apologies.
Zuleikha, at his questionings content,
Forthwith was to his private chamber sent.
Then ran before her every serving maid,
Both coronet and head before her laid.
Exulting ever in her beauty rare
Gold robes for her adornment they prepare.*
And when men's bustle gave to quiet place,
Tow'rds their own home when all had turned their face,
The moon bride on her face a dark veil bound,
And spread a golden curtain on the ground.
For victory upon the azure height
The earth lit up with stars a shining light.
Heav'n in the sky the Pleiads' cluster hung;
Rubies and pearls together twilight strung.
For the world's secret veil night's hair provides;
Within that screen a world its secrets hides.
Consorts together then their secret place,
Closed with an amber veil to others' face.
In her own veil Zuleikha sitting waits,
Her heart within her body palpitates.
“This thirsty one with tears whose eyelids gleam,
“Is she awake, O God, or in a dream?
“Will water ever, then, this thirst allay?
“Will from this heart the fever pass away?”
At times there filled her eye the joyous tear,
At times 'twas blood from disappointment's fear.
At times she said: “I can not yet be sure
“That days of gladness will for me endure.”
At times she said: “God's grace belongs to all,
“From God's grace hopeless it were wrong to fall.”
Her heart in tumult with such thoughts as these
Happy at times, at times but ill at ease.
Sudden before the door the curtain rose,
A veil-less moon within it to disclose.
As fell Zuleikha's eye upon that sight,
She saw it ever with increased delight.
Unconscious she became when rose that day,
In sunlight darkness' shadow passed away.
That faith and lovingness when Joseph knew,
That madness that to him alone was due.
Her to the throne of gold he kindly led,
And made his breast a pillow for her head.
With his own scent did he her sense redeem,
And brought her back awake from her sweet dream.
If on that face which erst had shunned his eye,
His heart for long had passed with loathing by,
When on her face again his glance he threw,
As Chinese pictures on brocade to view,
Sweet as a Huris' face to loving heart,
With cheek unadorned by tire-woman's art,
Then when his eye found its rest on her face,
The reins drew him on to kiss and embrace.

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